It is a counselor’s job to help people find the roots of their problems. Through conversation and assessment, counselors learn how their clients think, react and cope. Counselors are able to help clients find healthy solutions to what troubles them. The only difference between Christian and secular counseling is the inclusion of the spiritual dimension.
A bachelor’s degree in Christian counseling gives students a foundational knowledge in psychology, counseling and ministry. Many programs include an opportunity to participate in an internship or practicum, which allows the students to put theoretical knowledge into practice. Most counseling positions require master’s degrees, so a bachelor’s in Christian counseling online is an ideal stepping stone towards graduate studies and counseling certification. Earning the degree online allows students with work or family responsibilities, or other factors that make it difficult to get to campus, to get their education when it’s most convenient for them.
Finding the program that best fits your needs can be a demanding task, so we ranked the best online bachelor’s in Christian counseling programs to make your search stress-free.
|Rank||School Name||School Logo||City||Cost||Address & Contact Info||School Links||Acclaim for Online Programs||School Description|
|1||Laurel University||High Point||$$$$$||1215 Eastchester Drive|
High Point, NC 27265-3115
The Bachelor of Arts in Ministry program offers a counseling concentration that instills in graduates the skills they need to seek employment and the foundational psychology and Christian counseling courses necessary to pursue a master's degree. Courses cover subjects such as counseling theology, principles of Christian counseling, counseling methods, cross cultural counseling and abnormal psychology.
Online classes are accessed through the Canvas learning management system. By following the recommended course sequence, students can earn their degrees in four years. During the first three years of study, students must fulfill 15 clock-hours of community or Christian services per semester; these hours count as half a credit towards graduation. In their senior year, Christian counseling degree students participate in a practicum and internship.
|2||Southwestern Assemblies of God University||Waxahachie||$$$$$||1200 Sycamore|
Waxahachie, TX 75165
Christian counseling students complete a range of foundational biblical studies courses and core counseling courses. Major courses are comprehensive and cover topics that include: hermeneutics, marriage counseling, developmental psychology and crisis intervention. After finishing extensive core courses, students complete 12 credits in internships and practicums through ministries and pastoral positions. These are designed to demonstrate expertise with curriculum materials by allowing students to put theories learned in class to practical use.
Christian counseling degree students can earn up to 45 credit hours by participating in the Experiential Learning Credit course; this three-hour course gives degree seekers an opportunity to demonstrate knowledge gained through life and work experience. Students and instructors access class materials and discussion boards through the Blackboard learning portal.
|3||Lee University||Cleveland||$$$$$||1120 N Ocoee St|
Cleveland, TN 37311
Ministry leadership students develop a foundational understanding of biblical studies with theological core courses before they advance to ministry leadership and counseling courses. There are eight required courses as part of the counseling emphasis, and their subject matter covers counseling theories, crisis management, human sexuality and the Christian family.
Lee University relies on the Moodle platform to deliver their online courses. This degree requires 120 credit hours for graduation: 18 hours in the religious core, 36 hours of general education classes, 30 hours in ministry leadership and 24 hours in the counseling emphasis. The additional 12 credits consist of general electives.
|4||Central Christian College of Kansas||McPherson||$$$$$||1200 S Main|
McPherson, KS 67460-5740
The ministry leadership degree is ideal for students who have an associate's degree or equivalent college credits and wish to obtain a bachelor's degree in an accelerated format. With proper prerequisite credits, the ministry leadership program can be completed in 22 months. Many of the program's graduates move on to graduate studies, but this degree prepares students for immediate employment in local churches, ministries or parachurch ministries such as homeless shelters and social service programs.
Central Christian uses an in-house learning management system developed by Three Rivers Systems Inc. Courses are delivered in a convenient asynchronous format, and students enrolled in this program focus on one class per each six-week module. Each class requires an estimated total of 20 hours of weekly coursework between readings, assignments and "in-class" time.
|5||Dallas Christian College||Dallas||$$$$$||2700 Christian Pkwy.|
Dallas, TX 75234-7299
The Bachelor of Science in Psychology and Bible program requires 129 total credit hours for graduation. Requirements include: six courses in a Bible core, 17 general education courses, ten major courses and ten elective courses. Due to the nature of psychology degrees, students who complete this bachelor's program generally continue to graduate studies.
The Christian counseling degree program allows students to tailor their curriculum to align with their interests through their selection of electives. Students are required to complete an internship in an area related to the theories and practices learned in class. Dallas Christian's online courses are available through FLEXCampus, their version of the Moodle portal.
|6||Trinity College of Florida||Trinity||$$$$$||2430 Welbilt Boulevard|
Trinity, FL 34655-4401
The Bachelor of Science in Counseling combines a professional approach with biblical perspectives. It gives students a foundational understanding of counseling theory, developmental psychology and communication. Major courses taken at Trinity include: Christian Perspective and Learning Skills, Counseling Adolescents, Crisis Counseling and Romans.
The online christian counseling degree program is offered through TrinityQuest, an accelerated, degree completion program for adult learners who already have some college credits. Classes are taken one at a time and last five weeks. Those interested in the program typically transfer at least 60 semester hours into the program, leaving them between 54 and 63 requirements to fulfill. Students and instructors access online course materials and discussion boards by logging in to eCampusWeb, powered by Canvas, with their myTitus account.
|7||Family of Faith College||Shawnee||$$$$$||30 Kinville|
Shawnee, OK 74802
Family of Faith's Church Ministry degree program provides a comprehensive foundational understanding of biblical and theological studies and a focused look at professional ministry. This program includes a general education core as well as six credit hours in real-world Christian service. Applicants must be committed Christians with a desire for dedicated employment in ministries or churches.
Online courses are accessible through the KEEN learning management system. Online christian counseling degree students complete 42 credit hours of biblical and theological studies, 39 credit hours of general studies, 49 hours of professional services and six hours of Christian services.
|8||Messenger College||Euless||$$$$$||400 S Industrial Blvd Ste 300|
Euless, TX 76040-4202
The undergraduate online christian counseling degree imparts foundational counseling knowledge as it works within the Christian worldview. Students complete 128 credit hours of coursework, including: Life of Christ and Spiritual Formation in the ministry core; and Addictive Behavior & Recovery, Counseling Adult Population and Pastoral Care & Counseling in the counseling major. The curriculum culminates in a field practicum where students are able to apply their theoretical knowledge to practical situation.
The BA in Counseling prepares students to pursue a master's degree. Classes are taken in eight-week blocks during the 16-week semesters. While online courses can be accessed asynchronously, students must prove they are participating by meeting assignment deadlines, taking quizzes and exams and communicating with their instructors and classmates. Messenger College has recently transferred their online learning from Populi to the Atheneo platform.
Most entry-level positions for counselors require candidates to have at least a master’s degree and some practical field experience. At the same time, a degree in Christian counseling can prepare students for immediate employment in parishes, churches and ministries in mentorship and leadership roles.
Along with foundational psychology and counseling classes, most, if not all, online bachelor’s in Christian counseling programs include religious core classes in ministries, theology and biblical studies. Those who do not continue on to a master’s may find employment within their churches and communities, working with parishioners and clergy members to create programs for the community.
Continuing Christian counseling studies and obtaining a master’s degree can open the door to other employment opportunities, such as:
- Directors, Religious Activities and Education
2014 Mean Annual Salary: $44,680
- Mental Health Counselors and Marriage and Family Therapists
2012 Median Annual Salary: $41,500
Job Outlook, 2012-2022: 29% growth
Many undergraduate degree programs require students to participate in hands-on ministry and church internships. These opportunities play an important role in helping students determine if they desire to apply their studies to Christian settings, or if they prefer to continue their education and move into more secular roles as family and marital counselors.